Jannik Hansen made it look way too easy on this night.
If you read my preview for this game, I thank you for taking the time to do so, and appreciate your click. But boy, I could not have been more wrong. I listed a few less than flattering offensive statistics regarding the Nashville Predators, before citing the last meeting between these two teams as the reason why this would be a snooze fest.
Instead, what we were treated to was one of the more exciting Canucks games of the entire season. And quite frankly, a game which featured just about everything you’d want to see as a fan. Goals, a penalty shot,
momentum swingers fights, and some more goals. It had it all. What it also had, was a final result that saw the Canucks earn two points with a 7-4 victory.
Read on Past the Jump for Analysis, and Scoring Chance Data.
We usually start with the scoring chance data, so we will again here. But honestly, I wouldn’t read too much into it. You’ll notice that there are some ugly numbers below for the Canucks; which may not be as ugly once you put them into perspective. Essentially the Predators had one thoroughly impressive shift in the 2nd period where they kept the Canucks hemmed in, registering 4 scoring chances. And then they did a ton of their damage in the second half of the third period as the Canucks were nursing a 3-goal lead. The overall numbers will skew things, making a lot of individual performance look worse than they actually were.
The Raymond-Ebbett-Hansen line was the difference in this one, yet they finished the night with a negative scoring chance differential as a unit. Oh well. They combined for three goals, with Jannik Hansen doing the majority of the work. There must be a reason he was named ‘TSN’s Chevrolet Electric Player of the Game’. He was a blur all night, and his speed/tenacity single-handedly created two of the scores. The third was a product of exceptional, fundamentally solid team play. I simply loved the goal that made it 3-1 late in the 1st. Andrew Alberts made a great pass to get it to Bieksa – while in some distress deep in his own zone – who quickly got it to Hansen. Ultimately, Raymond finished off a sequence that saw every player on the ice make a contribution.
Speaking of Bieksa, I was happy to see him back in there, but he had a rather forgettable night. The first goal against came after a brutal turnover in the defensive zone, and the second goal went in off his skate. He was eventually reunited with Edler, and they both looked incredibly soft en route to the 4th goal for the Predators. I’m willing to give him somewhat of a free pass given the fact that he just missed 6 straight games. But he needs to be better.
How about Steve Pinizzotto, eh? In his first NHL shift, he took a healthy run at Kevin ‘Don’t Call Me Calvin’ Klein, before ultimately dropping the mitts with him. His linemates for the night, Weise and Lapierre, each had eventful nights as well. Weise had a fight with Rich Clune, which featured 239238120 missed punches. Nonetheless, there’s no denying the two combatants made up for their lack of technique and fighting ability with enthusiasm. As for Lapierre, he scored a beauty of a goal after exiting the penalty box.
One of my final notes was "Canucks score 5 goals without anything from the Sedins, nice luxury!" That came with roughly 5 minutes left. What followed was a handful of scoring chances, and eventually a ridiculous move by Henrik Sedin on a penalty shot to put the game on ice. Chris Mason is still looking for his jockstrap, I think.
Zack Kassian had quite a promising start to the game, as he used his size to create some quality opportunities. Unfortunately as the game went along he turned the puck over, and wound up being stapled to the bench. At least he has Keith Ballard to console him.
And finally, let’s give it up to David Booth, who finally scored his first of the season. All it took was 11 games, 26 shots on goal, and an empty net.
Scoring Chance Data
A chance is counted any time a team directs a shot cleanly on-net from within home-plate. Shots on goal and misses are counted, but blocked shots are not (unless the player who blocks the shot is “acting like a goaltender”). Generally speaking, we are more generous with the boundaries of home-plate if there is dangerous puck movement immediately preceding the scoring chance, or if the scoring chance is screened. If you want to get a visual handle on home-plate, check this image.
Scoring Chance Totals:
|1st Period||2nd Period||3rd Period||Totals|
|Predators (EV)||3 (3)||5 (5)||7 (4)||15 (12)|
|Canucks (EV)||4 (3)||3 (2)||5 (5)||12 (10)|
Individual Scoring Chances:
|Individual||Chances Taken||Chances Assisted||Chances Total|
Individual Scoring Chance Differential:
|Chance Differential||EV F – A||SH F – A||PP F – A||Chances Total|